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Petzschner gives Germany 3-2 win over host Croatia



Zagreb, Croatia (Sports Network) - Philipp Petzschner straight-setted 6- foot-10 Ivo Karlovic to lift Germany to a 3-2 victory over host Croatia in a best-of-five 2011 Davis Cup first-round matchup.

The 26-year-old Petzschner replaced Florian Mayer in the German lineup and handled Karlovic in 6-4, 7-6 (7-3), 7-6 (7-5) fashion at Dom Sportova. Karlovic stepped in for Ivan Dodig here on Day 3.

In Sunday's opening reverse singles rubber, Marin Cilic kept 2005 champion Croatia alive with a 6-2, 6-3, 7-6 (8-6) victory over Philipp Kohlschreiber, setting the stage for a Petzschner-Karlovic showdown.

On Saturday in Zagreb, Petzschner and Christopher Kas won a five-set doubles match against Dodig and Karlovic to give three-time Davis Cup champion Germany a 2-1 lead. Karlovic did, however, set a new tennis record on Saturday, as the International Tennis Federation confirmed that the towering Croat swatted the fastest-ever serve in his doubles setback.

The 32-year-old Karlovic unleashed a 156 miles per hour serve in the fourth set here on Day 2, breaking Andy Roddick's previous record of 155 mph.

"I noticed that while serving, saw it on the screen," said Karlovic, who is the tallest-ever player on the ATP circuit. "It is really great."

Friday's opening singles victors here were Cilic and Kohlschreiber.

The Germans, captained by Patrik Kuhnen, will meet 2010 Davis Cup runner-up France in the quarterfinals in July.

03/06 15:18:55 ET